Putin, Modi hold talks to remove irritants in relationship

Leaders of India and Russia have begun their annual talks that are expected to conclude with new defense deals and the smoothing over of recent irritants in their decades-long close relationship.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, who arrived in the western Indian state of Goa on Saturday, and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi will discuss regional security issues and the threat posed by global terrorism. They also hope to stem the drift in their ties as India engages more closely with the United States.

Putin and Modi will lay the foundation stone of the next phase of a nuclear power plant that Russia has built in southeastern India. The two countries are also expected to sign a multi-billion dollar deal for the delivery of Russian-made anti-missile air defense systems.